Career Experience

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    Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)


    The Career Experience survey collects information on the career experiences of employees. The main populations of interest are employees (excluding those aged 15-20 who are still attending school), and employees with children under 12 years of age.


    Data collected in this survey are used in the formulation and monitoring of policy relating to workplace flexibility, barriers to career development, workers with family responsibilities.


    This survey is conducted as part of the Monthly Population Survey, which comprises the Labour Force Survey and, in most months, a supplementary survey topic.

    SCOPE - Labour Force Survey

    The Labour Force Survey includes all persons aged 15 and over except:

    • members of the permanent defence forces;
    • certain diplomatic personnel of overseas governments, customarily excluded from census and estimated populations;
    • overseas residents in Australia; and
    • members of non-Australian defence forces (and their dependants) stationed in Australia.

    From July 1993 Jervis Bay Territory is also excluded from the scope of the survey. Before July 1993 it was included in estimates for the Australian Capital Territory.

    SCOPE: Career Experience

    The scope for Career Experience was the same as that used for the Labour Force Survey except that it was restricted to persons aged 15 and over who were wage and salary earners in their current position. Students at boarding school, some patients in hospitals and sanatoriums and inmates of reformatories, goals, etc., persons aged 15 to 20 still at school and persons who worked solely for payment in kind were also excluded.

    This supplementary survey includes some job-holders who are excluded from estimates of employees published in Labour Force Australia (ABS Cat. no. 6203.0). These are persons who were away from work:

    • on workers compensation and were not returning (or were unsure about returning) to their employer
    • for 4 weeks or more without pay
    • and stood down for less than 4 weeks for reasons other than bad weather or plant breakdown

    In Labour Force, Australia (ABS Cat. no. 6203.0) these job-holders would be classified as unemployed or not in the labour force, according to their activity in the reference week. As this survey asks details over a longer period of time, it is appropriate to classify these persons as job-holders for the purpose of this survey.

    From July 1997, all supplementary surveys excluded persons in remote and sparsely settled areas of Australia. The exclusion of these persons has only a minor effect on estimates for individual States or Territories.

    COVERAGE - Labour Force Survey

    In the Labour Force Survey, coverage rules are applied which aim to ensure that each person is associated with only one dwelling, and hence has only one chance of selection. The chance of a person being enumerated at two separate dwellings in the one survey is considered to be negligible.

    Persons who are away from their usual residence for six weeks or less at the time of interview are enumerated at their usual residence (relevant information may be obtained from other usual residents present at the time of the survey).


    Conceptual framework

    The survey presents data relating to workplace flexibility, barriers to career development and workers with family responsibilities by collecting information on the career experiences of wage and salary earners, including details of current job, changes in job, training opportunities, breaks from work (of more than 6 months duration), reason for breaks from work, numbers of dependent children and child care arrangements.

    Main outputs

    Results of the survey including data tables and analysis were released in publication format (ABS Cat no. 6254.0), and include the following tables:

    Employees: Selected characteristics, whether had some change in work, whether permanent or casual in current job.

    Career Experience of full-time employees

    Career Experience of part-time employees

    Employees who have worked with their current employer for one year or more: Whether had change in work in the last twelve months

    Employees who have worked with their current employer for one year or more: Status of current position

    Employees who have worked with their current employer for one year or more: Age

    Employees (excluding owner-managers) who have worked with their current employer for one year or more: Selected characteristics, whether promoted or transferred with current employer in the last twelve months

    Employees who have worked with their current employer for one year or more: Whether performance formally assessed by current employer

    Employees: Whether studied or attended formal training, age, whether permanent or casual by full-time/part-time status

    Employees who have attended a training course or studied for an educational qualification within the last 12 months: Length of time with current employer, whether full-time or part-time or permanent/casual employee in current position and whether training supported by employer

    Employees who have worked with their current employer for six months or more: Whether had any children under 12 years old and length of time with current employer by reason for break from work

    Employees with children aged under 6 years who took a break when youngest child was born: Details of break taken

    Employees with children aged under 12 years: Child Care use and age of youngest child

    All populations by State or Territory of usual residence


    Demographics: State, Area, Region, Sex, Marital Status, Relationship in Household, Period of Arrival and Age.

    Country of Birth: The Standard Australian Classification of Countries (SACC).

    Occupation: Australian Standard Classification of Occupations Second Edition (ASCO SE).

    Industry: Australia and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC).

    Educational attainment: Australian Bureau of Statistics Classification of Qualifications (ABSCQ).

    Other concepts (summary)

    Not applicable

    New South Wales
    South Australia
    Western Australia
    Northern Territory
    Part of State Metropolitan
    Part of State Extra-Metropolitan

    Comments and/or Other Regions

    Not all data are available for all areas.


    Frequency comments

    This survey was first conducted in February 1993. Since then it has been run on an irregular basis.


    This survey was first conducted in February 1993 and has been run on an irregular basis ever since.


    Data availability comments

    Publication Career Experience, Australia (ABS Cat. No. 6254.0)

    25/11/2003 01:28 PM